chapter
tourism
Pages 6

Italy offers a diverse range of tourist products, from cultural tourist attractions based on art, culture, music and religion, to coastal tourism, mountains, hot springs and spas, natural resources, theme parks and special events. It has been estimated that at least 40 per cent of the world’s cultural and historical heritage (including 50 per cent of the world’s artistic heritage) is concentrated in Italy (Bonini, 1993). However, such concentration presents the Italian government and the tourist industry with a conundrum: Italy’s cultural heritage will inevitably help to maintain that country’s attractiveness to domestic and international travellers but, at the same time, large numbers of tourists present complex visitor management problems, which ultimately threaten the sustainability of tourist resources.